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RBS to close 54 more branches; hundreds of jobs on the line

Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC has reviewed its England and Wales branch network and decided to shutter 54 branches in January 2019, with 258 jobs expected to be made redundant.

"We are now in a position where the size and shape of our branch network across NatWest and Royal Bank of Scotland will be stable until at least 2020," the group said Sept. 5.

The closures were the result of RBS' failed attempt to divest its Williams & Glyn brand — comprising Royal Bank of Scotland in England and Wales, and NatWest's retail banking business in Scotland — into a separate "challenger bank." The lender said that as the spin-off was not taking place, the RBS network was being reintegrated back into the core RBS bank.

Representing RBS employees, union Unite criticized the move.

In May, RBS announced 162 branch closures and 792 job cuts.